Patrick F. Fagan

When receiving a gift, sometimes the best moment is right before it’s opened. That’s the moment when all advertising hype melds with the hope that the gift will truly be what is desired. But as all holiday gift givers and receivers know, many things don’t deliver what they promise.

Going Rogue by Sarah Palin FREE

And in a sexually-charged society such as ours, where sex sells everything from tires to Christmas trees, Family Research Council has released a ground-breaking comprehensive study review of what it costs families trying to create a life together when pornography has taken hold. Men, women and children are saturated by sexual content, and more significantly, are told that it has no real effect. It’s just a little amusement.

But pornography is no benign gift to men and women. As this academic review reveals, pornography is creating a debt and a cost in the lives of family that rivals any deficit the federal government is producing.

The fact that marriage rates are dropping steadily is well known. But the impact of pornography use and its correlation to fractured families has been little discussed. The data show that as pornography sales increase, the marriage rate drops. (see graph) From there, the science is clear; children from families without married parents have much higher poverty rates as well as poorer health and other socio-economic difficulties. Nations with low marriage rates suffer the same fates. And underlying the social trends is the impact of pornography on family formation. It’s a quiet family killer.

It’s time for a sex-oriented culture like Americas to consider the cost of this kind of pornographic saturation. Here is some of what the studies showed:

Much is made of the effects of pornography on men, rightly so, but its more tragic effects can be seen in the marriages and families of men who are habitual users, for pornography and infidelity are almost interchangeable – at least in the heart; and in family life the heart counts most. Pornography becomes a powerful acid that weakens the capacity to marry or sustain a marriage.

Most men, including doctors, had not the foggiest notion that the wives of habitual pornography users developed deep psychological wounds, commonly reporting feelings of betrayal, loss, mistrust, devastation, and anger in responses to the discovery of their husbands’ use of pornography, especially on-line internet use. Both men and women considered on-line activity and relationships acts of adultery.


Patrick F. Fagan

Pat Fagan, Ph.D. Senior Fellow in Family and Religion Issues at Family Research Council is the author of the review of the social science literature on the effects of pornography, available at here.